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2/11 THIS DAY IN HISTORY: PILLMAN RESPECTS THE BOOKERMAN, OWENS CAPTURES WWE NXT TITLE AND MORE

By Mike Johnson on 2019-02-11 08:00:00

February 11th

On this day in history in ....

1942 - Tarzan Lopez defeats Black Guzman in Mexico City, Mexico to win the NWA World Middleweight Title. 

1944 - Rolland Kirchmeyer is recognized as the first NWA Florida Champion.  He would lose the belt 15 days later to Ed "Strangler" Lewis, who would hold it for two years before losing it back to Kirchmeyer. 

1969 - Dory Funk, Jr. defeats Gene Kiniski in Tampa, Florida for the NWA World Heavyweight Title. Funk would go on to hold the title for over four years before losing it to Harley Race.

1970 - WWWF World Champion Bruno Sammartino & Gorilla Monsoon defeated Ernie Ladd & Waldo Von Erich in a Texas Death Match in Boston, Massachusetts with boxing greats Tony Galento & Tom McNeeley as special referees.

1972 - Seiji Sakaguchi defeats King Krow in Los Angeles, California to win the NWA United National Heavyweight Title.  That belt is now part of the All Japan Triple Crown. 

1983 - Giant Baba defeats Harley Race in St. Louis, Missouri for the Pacific Wrestling Federation World Heavyweight Title, starting his third reign as champion.  That belt is now part of the All Japan Triple Crown. 

1983 - WWF World Champion Bob Backlund defeats Intercontinental Champion Magnificent Muraco in a Texas Death Match in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  Only the WWF World Title was on the line.

1984 - Tito Santana defeats the Magnificent Muraco with a sunset flip for the WWF Intercontinental Title in Boston, Massachusetts, ending Muraco's second title reign.

1996 - WCW held SuperBrawl VI at the Bayfront Center in St. Petersburg, Florida. Here are the results from the show:
- The Road Warriors defeated Dick Slater & Bunkhouse Buck. This match was aired on "The Main Event" on TBS before the PPV began.
- Hugh Morrus defeated Chris Kanyon. This match was aired on "The Main Event" on TBS before the PPV began.
- Big Bubba Rogers & VK Wallstreet defeated Joey Maggs & Sgt. Craig Pittman. This match was aired on "The Main Event" on TBS before the PPV began.
- Hacksaw Duggan defeated Lock Ness by disqualification. This match was aired on "The Main Event" on TBS before the PPV began.
- The Nasty Boys defeated The Public Enemy in a Falls Count Anywhere match.
- Television Champion Johnny B. Badd defeated Diamond Dallas Page.
- World Tag Team Champions Sting & Lex Luger defeated Harlem Heat.
- United States Champion Konnan defeated One Man Gang.
- Kevin Sullivan defeated Brian Pillman in a strap match in which the winner could only be declared when the other wrestler said "I respect you". After a minute of fighting, Pillman suddenly stopped, took the mic and said "I respect you, Bookerman" and walked out. This was part of Brian Pillman's shoot-work in WCW to establish him as a "loose cannon", referring to Sullivan's real-life position as booker in WCW, and then walking out of the match. Arn Anderson came out and took Pillman's place in the match, but after a few minutes, Ric Flair came out and convinced the Anderson and Sullivan to stop fighting.
- World Tag Team Champions Sting & Lex Luger defeated The Road Warriors.
- Ric Flair defeated Randy Savage in a steel cage match to win the WCW World Title, ending Savage's second title reign, and beginning Flair's seventeenth World title reign (depending on which records you believe).
- Hulk Hogan defeated The Giant (Big Show) in a steel cage match.

2001 - Mima Shimoda defeats Yoshiko Tamura for the NWA Pacific Women's Title in Tokyo, Japan.

2010 - Vince McMahon announces during a WWE investor conference call that, after 23 years, WWE would be dropping the "Survivor Series" name, the second longest running WWE PPV title in the history of the company.  After being asked about Survivor Series being the only PPV in the fourth quarter of 2009 to show a decrease in buys from the previous year, Vince stated: 

"We think that Survivor Series is obsolete, as far as that title is concerned.  It was something that worked many, many years ago, in terms of a creative standpoint, various teams competing.  That really is not advantageous as the consumer now looks as what actually they are buying.  And it's such a broad ... Survivor Series yes, many years ago, was one of the original four pay-per-views, but it's outlasted its usage and it is one of the things in terms of rebranding, this year and going forward, that will be rebranded.  No longer will we have that title, Survivor Series."

Vince would later rescind this decision, and in a funny twist the Survivor Series would end up being the only PPV event in the fourth quarter of 2010 to show an increase in PPV buys over the previous year.  The PPV still exists.

2011 - TNA ran Elmira, NY.  Whitney McConnell filed the following live report:

I wanted to send along results from the TNA house show tonight in Elmira, NY.

They had an early start for people with VIP passes. Instead of doing a backstage meet and greet, they had everyone go down to ringside and had some of the stars come out and do pictures and autographs for anyone who wanted them. Beer Money had a table out in the food court setup to do autographs. They also did a "Hardy Party" and had TNA trucks for $80 that came with a backstage pass to meet Jeff Hardy. Throughout the night, they were giving out backstage passes to people making the most noise.

Match 1: Tommy Dreamer defeated Robbie E. They had a little dance off at the beginning of the match. It was funny to see Dreamer really get into it before going after Robbie E.

Match 2: TNA Knockouts Champion Madison Rayne defeated Angelina Love to retain the Knockouts Championship. Earl Hebner got a LOT of heat and "You screwed Bret" chants.

Match 3: Jeff Jarrett defeated Crimson in a solid match with a lot of back and forth. A lot of "You sold out" and "Jarrett sucks" chants throughout.

Match 4: TNA Tag Team Champions Beer Money defeated Ink Inc to retain the tag titles. Before they started the match, they were having some fun. James Storm through beer at Jesse Neal, soaking the mat. They messed around with each other for a few minutes, trying to let the mat dry. They all fell on it at least once. After the match, both teams shook hands, and then JB talked about Jesse Neal being on the USS Cole when it was attacked. They asked for all the veterans in attendance to raise their hands, and everyone chanted "USA" and clapped for them.

They went to intermission and Don West threw a bunch of merchandise into the audience. Madison Rayne did autographs out in concession.

Match 5: Brother Devon defeated Bully Ray in a tables match with special guest referee Mick Foley. The match started out as a normal match, with Brian Hebner as referee. But Bully Ray shoved him a couple of times. So he ended the match and called out Mick Foley to be referee and restart the match. Foley said he didn't want just any match. The crowd started a "tables" chant, and Foley made it tables. At the beginning, Bully Ray hit Devon in the head with a mic, and then proceeded to insult Foley, telling him he was a cheap Terry Funk wanna be and told him that he should just kill himself. Devon eventually got the upper hand and brought out the table. With an assist from Mr. Socko, Devon put Ray through the table.

Match 6: TNA World Champion Mr. Anderson defeated Jeff Hardy to retain the World Championship in the main event.

After the main event, for $20, not matter the size of your group, you could get in the ring and get your picture taken with Mr. Anderson. The stars came out again to do more autographs and pictures. Jeff Jarett also sat out by the door giving autographs to everyone.

Biggest pops of the night were probably Anderson and Beer Money. Jeff Hardy and Ink Inc both got a bit of a mixed reaction. Biggest heat were Jeff Jarrett and Earl Hebner, followed by Bully Ray.

I have to say, I was really impressed with the show, especially the fact that they were allowing everyone to get autographs and pictures. They are very appreciative of their fans.

2011 - WWE broadcast Smackdown.  Richard Trionfo filed the following TV report:

This week’s Smackdown begins with a look back at what happened after Edge retained the World Title with the help of Kelly Kelly, despite Edge’s apprehension over his tag team partner. As a result, Kelly was fired by Vickie Guerrero. She also announced another rematch for Dolph Ziggler with guest referee Vickie Guerrero.

We are live on tape from Green Bay, Wisconsin and your announcers are Michael ‘Hey Truth, you can say hello to this crowd and get it right’ Cole, Josh ‘The Frozen Tundra’ Mathews, and Booker ‘Main Event Announcer’ T.

The ring is adorned with balloons, flowers, and other celebratory items along with Ricardo Rodriguez who introduces Alberto Del Rio, who drives into the arena.

As he walks to the ring, we see footage from last week when Hornswoggle hit Alberto and then Alberto decided to thank Hornswoggle with the shot to the groin by knocking him down. We then had Kofi Kingston come to the ring and Alberto put Kofi in the cross arm breaker.

Alberto introduces himself, but we already knew that. Alberto says that with Valentine’s Day around the corner, in addition to being a great athlete, the winner of the biggest Royal Rumble in history, and the man who will be in the main event at Wrestlemania; that doesn’t mean that there is no love in his heart. It is the other way. He has Ricardo come into the ring with a heart shaped box. Alberto says that he loves a lot of things. He loves his cars. He loves his beautiful country of Mexico. He loves the fact that the six superstars who hope to face him at Wrestlemania will destroy themselves in the Elimination Chamber.

He says that he loves the most in this life is ‘destiny’, as he opens the box to reveal the word written inside. Destiny loves him . . . Alberto Del Rio and we now see a photo of Alberto in the box. Alberto says that Aaron Rodgers may have won the Super Bowl, but unlike Aaron, he does not need to pretend that he is a Heavyweight Champion because it is his destiny and he will become the World Champion at Wrestlemania.

Kofi Kingston comes out and he stands on the stage with something to say. All Alberto talks about is destiny and the future, like he knows something that nobody else knows. Kofi says that nobody knows what the future holds and there is no such thing as a crystal ball. Kofi says that he knows about the past. He knows about Alberto beating him with the kendo stick last week. Kofi says that he may not know about destiny, but he knows about the present and it is just the two of them. Kofi says that this is Alberto’s destiny.

Kofi gets a kendo stick to show Alberto what he dealt with last week. Alberto begs for mercy so Kofi will not hit him. Kofi thinks about it, and he eventually hits Alberto and then after Alberto leaves the ring, Kofi destroys everything in the ring and throws balloons at Alberto. Kofi takes a swing at the photo of Alberto and he sends it deep to left field.

We go to commercial.

Booker, Josh, and Michael talk about what just happened and while Booker liked what he saw, Cole is indignant about what Kofi did.

Match Number One: Kofi Kingston versus Alberto Del Rio

 

Alberto with a kick and punch followed by a series of punches to Kofi’s head until the referee pulls Del Rio off. Del Rio with a kick and knee. Del Rio with an Irish whip but Kofi with a forearm out of the corner. Kofi with kicks to Del Rio until he is pulled out of the corner. Kofi tries for a running boot into the corner but Del Rio moves and Kofi appears to have injured his foot. Del Rio with a back breaker for a near fall. Del Rio with a rear chin lock.

Kofi with punches to try to get out of the hold but Alberto pulls Kofi down by the hair and gets another near fall. Del Rio puts his knee in Kofi’s back along with the chin lock. Alberto with a knee and then he charges at Kofi but Kofi drops down and Del Rio goes through the ropes and lands on the floor. Del Rio returns to the ring and he is met with chops from Kingston. Kofi with a drop kick followed by the Superman punch.

Kofi with the Boom drop and then he sets up for Trouble in Paradise but he sees that Del Rio recovered too much so he tries for a splash into the corner. Del Rio charges into the corner and then Kofi moves and hits the pendulum kick. Kofi goes up top for a cross body and he gets a two count. Del Rio with a kick and then he gets Kofi on his shoulders but Kofi with elbows to escape. Kofi with SOS for a near fall when Del Rio grabs the ropes. Kofi sets up for Trouble in Paradise one more time. Del Rio sees it coming and he leaves the ring.

Kofi goes after Del Rio and he wants to send Del Rio into the ring steps but Del Rio is the one to use the ring steps as a weapon and he sends Kofi into the steps twice. Del Rio returns to the ring and he puts Kofi in the cross arm breaker and Kofi taps out.

Winner: Alberto Del Rio

After the match, Del Rio takes some time to release the hold but he eventually lets go.

Todd Grisham is in the interview area with Edge. Todd asks Edge about his chances tonight with his ex-wife as the referee. Edge looks at Todd and then he sarcastically says that he thinks Vickie will call things down the middle and then after the match, they will all go out together and have a celebratory dinner for Valentine’s Day. Edge says that will happen when pigs fly and Vickie Guerrero on an airplane does not count. Todd asks Edge how will he retain the title and Edge says that he has no idea. We go to commercial.

We are back and we see Aaron Rodgers celebrating his Super Bowl victory with a World Title belt over his shoulder. We then see Aaron being given a spinner belt by David Letterman earlier this week.

We go to the front row where there are members of the Green Bay Packers and they have their own World Title belts.

Match Number Two: Vladimir Kozlov with Santino Marella but without Tamina versus Justin Gabriel with Heath Slater, Ezekiel Jackson, and Wade Barrett

 

Gabriel tries for a kick but Kozlov blocks it and takes Gabriel down with a leg whip. Kozlov sends Gabriel into the corner and then hits a series of shoulders to the midsection. Gabriel kicks Kozlov away and then he goes off the turnbuckles but Kozlov catches Gabriel and then he drops Gabriel on the turnbuckles. Kozlov with head butt to Gabriel while he is laying across the top turnbuckle. Kozlov kicks Gabriel and then he tries for a power slam but Gabriel gets free and he kicks Kozlov finishing with a running boot to the head. Gabriel punches Kozlov and then gets a near fall.

Gabriel with a reverse chin lock but Kozlov pushes Gabriel away. Gabriel with a kick to Kozlov but Kozlov locks the arms up and gives Gabriel a series of head butts to the chest. Jackson gets on the apron to distract the referee and that allows Slater to trip Kozlov as he comes off the ropes. The referee asks Slater if he did anything and while this takes place, Santino comes over to Slater and announces that he is going to give him the Cobra and Santino is a man of his word. Gabriel kicks Santino but Kozlov kicks Gabriel. Gabriel gets his knees up on an elbow drop and then Gabriel goes up top for the 450 Splash and gets the three count.

Winner: Justin Gabriel

After the match, Wade Barrett sends Santino into the ring and Barrett gives Santino Wasteland. Jackson hits an uranage on Kozlov.

We go to commercial.

Match Number Three: Chris Masters versus Drew McIntyre

 

Drew rolls out of the ring before locking up and he demands a mic. Drew says that as far as he is concerned, Edge is fully responsible for Kelly Kelly being fired. He tells Edge that he will not forget that. Drew tells Kelly that he knows that she is watching this at home and this one is for her.

Masters kicks Drew as he returns to the ring and then gets a near fall with a rollup. Masters with a clothesline and chop followed by a Sky High. Masters goes to the turnbuckles but McIntyre moves when Masters comes off the turnbuckles. McIntyre tries for a back slide but Masters stays on his feet and he flips McIntyre over but Drew counters with a Future Shock DDT for the three count.

Winner: Drew McIntyre

We go to commercial.

We are back and it is time to take a look back at the facial injury suffered by Cody Rhodes because of Rey’s knee brace. Cole tells us that Cody had successful reconstructive facial surgery and he is recovering.

Rey Mysterio is walking in the back and Todd Grisham stops him to ask Rey if he had anything to say to Cody Rhodes. Rey asks Todd if he is serious. Rey wonders why he would say anything to Cody. It is only a broken nose and he didn’t do it intentionally. Injuries are a part of the game and they can happen during the course of the match. He hopes that Cody has the strength and the guts to get through this difficult time. Rey says that his focus is on beating Wade Barrett tonight and then winning the World Title at Elimination Chamber.

We see footage from last week when Wade Barrett defeated Big Show to get into the Elimination Chamber.

Wade says that in less than two weeks, he will be representing The Corre in the Smackdown Elimination Chamber match. Wade says that doesn’t mean that he is any better than the other men in The Corre because they are all equal. It only means that he will go to Wrestlemania as the World Champion. The master plan for the evolution of Smackdown by The Corre is in action and the next step is beating Rey Mysterio.

We go to commercial.

We are back and Cole and Josh talk about how next week is the 600th episode of Smackdown and Cole makes fun of other shows that have had long runs but nowhere near the number of episodes (of course if Simpsons had a new show every week, they would be over 1,000 episodes). Josh points out that is the third highest amount of episodes for a show.

Match Number Three: Rey Mysterio versus Wade Barrett

 

Wade with a kick and punch to Rey followed by a knee to the head and a few more kicks. Rey slides under a boot from Wade and then Rey kicks Wade but Wade stops Rey with a knee and he gets a near fall. Wade sends Rey into the turnbuckles followed by a hard Irish whip and he gets another near fall.

Wade with a knee drop to Rey and the Barrett Irish whips Rey again but Rey with a drop toe hold that sends Barrett into the turnbuckle. Rey with a running drop kick to Wade in the corner. Rey goes to the top turnbuckle but Rey is tripped by Wade and Rey is hanging in the Tree of Woe. Wade kicks and chokes Rey. Wade gets a near fall and then he chokes Rey in the ropes.

Wade with a suplex to Rey followed by knees to the back. Wade follows that with an elbow to the neck. Rey gets out of a belly-to-back suplex and he drop kicks a charging Barrett in the knee and Wade falls into the ropes. Rey tries for the 619 but Wade recovers and kicks Rey in the midsection. Rey kicks Wade and then he drops down when Wade charges at him again and Wade goes to the floor. Rey with a seated splash off the apron. Wade hits a belly-to-back suplex onto the ringside barrier and we go to commercial.

We are back and Wade punches and kicks Rey as the action returns to the ring. Wade with his knee in Rey’s back but Rey rolls through and kicks Wade. Rey with a springboard cross body for a near fall. Wade sends Rey into the turnbuckles but Rey kicks Wade. Rey comes off the turnbuckles and Wade catches him and puts Rey on the top turnbuckle. Wade sets up for a superplex but Rey knocks Wade to the mat. Rey with a seated splash and a head scissors. Rey with another kick to Barrett’s jaw followed by a round kick and he gets a near fall.

Barrett gets Rey up for Wasteland but Rey gets out of it. Rey comes off the ropes and Barrett hits a Bossman Slam for a near fall. Barrett shows frustration that he cannot finish off Mysterio. Barrett tries for a pump handle slam but Rey counters and sends Wade into the ropes and he tries for another 619 but he sees Justin Gabriel coming to the ring so Rey hits a drop kick on Gabriel to neutralize him. Wade with a big boot to Rey and Wade gets Rey up for Wasteland and he hits it and gets the three count.

Winner: Wade Barrett

After the match, Gabriel, Slater, and Jackson come out and kick Rey. Gabriel goes up top for the 450 splash and Jackson tries to keep Rey on the mat in position. Big Show comes out and he sends Jackson to the floor and then he takes care of Slater and Gabriel before choke slamming Barrett. Show chops Slater and Gabriel followed by head butts. Show grabs Gabriel and Slater for a choke slam but Jackson attacks Show from behind. Slater punches and kicks Show while Jackson holds him. Gabriel with a super kick. Slater, Gabriel, and Barrett continue to assault Show. Jackson picks up a lifeless Big Show and then he suplexes him.

We go to commercial.

Match Number Five: JTG versus Kane

 

Kane with a knee to JTG but JTG with a sliding punch followed by a drop kick. JTG with a splash into the corner. Kane pushes JTG out of the corner and then hits a big boot to the head. Kane sends JTG into the turnbuckles and follows that with punches and kicks. Kane with a snap mare and drop kick to JTG. Kane with an Irish whip followed by a side slam. Kane goes up top for the clothesline and he hits it. Kane sets for the choke slam and he hits it and gets the three count.

Winner: Kane

We go to commercial.

We are back and Michelle and Layla are walking in the back and they talk about snakes and mention Eve. Layla points out that Eve wasn’t even supposed to be in the match at the Royal Rumble. Michelle says that it was their rematch. Michelle says that nobody ever helps them out. Michelle says that it was a fluke that Eve won and that if the referee was doing his job, Michelle would be the Divas Champion. Layla asks Michelle if she meant ‘we’ would be the champion and Michelle covers but kind of half hearted.

They happen to be walking past Vickie Guerrero’s office and Vickie walks out in her referee outfit. Vickie says that she was disappointed by LayCool and thought too highly of them. Vickie says that now she has to do things herself and that is why she is the referee in the match between Edge and Dolph tonight.

Dolph stops by and he tells Vickie to stop talking to the losers. Layla wonders what Dolph means. Dolph blames them for not winning the title last week.

Layla sarcastically thanks Michelle for having her back as we go to commercial.

We are back and we see a photo of the pinfall at the Royal Rumble where Michelle has a claim to be the Divas Champion.

Match Number Six: Layla with Michelle McCool versus Eve Torres in a Non Title Match

 

Layla goes to the floor and she tells Michelle that she can’t focus because she needs Michelle’s support. Eve goes to the floor and takes care of Michelle by pushing her out of the way. Eve sends Layla into the announce table. Layla with a kick to the midsection and then Layla slams Eve’s head into the mat. Layla chokes Eve in the ropes and then hits a drop kick to the back and gets a near fall. Layla with a rear chin lock and arm bar. Eve with an elbow and kick to Layla.

Eve with a fireman’s carry and drop kick or two. Eve with a series of kicks and a clothesline followed by a standing moonsault for a near fall. Layla with a back kick but Layla misses a clothesline and Eve hits a Flatliner. Eve goes up top for a moonsault but Michelle gets on the apron and distracts Eve. Layla kicks Eve and trips her. Layla tries for a cover but only gets a near fall but Eve is able to get the three count.

Winner: Eve Torres

Edge and Dolph Ziggler are walking in split screen as we go to commercial.

We are back and before the start of the main event, Vickie Guerrero reminds Edge that the spear is still banned and if he uses it, he will be stripped of the title.

Match Number Seven: Dolph Ziggler versus Edge for the World Heavyweight Title with Guest Referee Vickie Guerrero

 

Ziggler with a kick to the leg and he gets a near fall with a rollup on what might have been a fast count. They lock up and Ziggler backs Edge into the corner. Ziggler misses a punch and Edge punches Ziggler and Vickie pulls Edge out of the corner. Ziggler punches Edge and Vickie watches from a safe distance. Ziggler with another near fall on Edge. Ziggler kicks Edge and then punches him. Ziggler with a kick and neck breaker. Ziggler tries for the sleeper but Edge is able to keep Ziggler from locking it in properly. Edge with an Edge-o-matic and both men are down. Ziggler hits a drop kick on Edge and they go down again. Ziggler punches Edge but Edge with an Irish whip. Ziggler with a boot and then he goes to the turnbuckles but Edge blocks Ziggler’s move and hits a flapjack.

Edge with a running forearm and clothesline followed by an inverted side slam. Edge with a bareback and he tries for the Zig Zag but Edge holds on to the ropes. Edge with a kick and an Impaler DDT and Vickie puts Dolph’s foot on the rope to stop the count.

Vickie laughs at her performance and likes what she has done. Ziggler with a kick and running Fameasser for a near fall. Edge with a running forearm and both men are down. Vickie starts pulling her hair and acting like Edge when he gets set for the spear. Vickie tries to spear Edge and she bounces off Edge and appears to have hurt her ankle.

Vickie is checked on by the medical staff and helped out of the ring and Edge wonders what is going on. Edge hits a spear on Edge but Vickie is not looking. Since there is no referee, nobody makes the count. Edge looks for a referee so he can win the match. Edge sets for another spear and Vickie warns him. Edge hits a spear right in front of Vickie and we have a referee and it is Clay Matthews. He comes to the ring and he makes the three count.

Winner: Edge

After the match, Edge and Clay celebrate in the ring with their title belts.

2011 - TNA star AJ Styles teamed up with country star Sarah Darling, appearing in a music video for her song "Something To Do With Your Hands."


 

2012 - It was announced that New York Giants star Defensive End Jason Pierre-Paul would be appearing at Monday's Impact taping in Orlando, FL to work an angle with Kurt Angle.  The Giants had just won the Super Bowl.

2013 - WWE broadcast Raw.  Richard Trionfo filed the following TV report:

We are less than a week from the Elimination Chamber and it is time for the final push to the pay per view. Will the Shield regain their position of power when it comes to John Cena, Sheamus, and Ryback or will they give up the advantage that they have held since their debut? Will we see Big Show complain about how he is being treated by Booker T and the World Champion? What will happen with the current tag team champions as it appears that they are on different pages? Will 3MB debut their first country single?

Previously . . . on Raw, the Shield finally got a taste of their own medicine from their opponents at the Elimination Chamber. Oh yeah, The Rock is defending the WWE Title against the man who claims that he never lost it.

This week, Raw is in Nashville, Tennessee and your announcers are Jerry ‘Home of the Predators’ Lawler and Michael ‘Our Tame Wrestling Announcer’ Cole.

Paul Heyman is standing in the ring and he does not look happy. Paul introduces himself to the people of Nashville. He says that this is not how he envisioned things, but he is compelled to do this. Tonight is the last time you will ever see Paul Heyman. He says that some people might be happy, but Paul says that he will never play the victim.

Everything that he has ever done has been done with great passion. He has made great sacrifices for those passions. Those passions end up betraying him. For seven and a half years of his life, he sacrificed everything. He gave up his personal life and his parent’s fortune to bring everyone the single most hard hitting and entertaining product in professional wrestling and sports entertainment. That was called ECW.

Paul came to WWE and he saw the most physically gifted rookie and he sacrificed for that vision and passion. Paul says that he turned that rookie into the Next Big Thing. That person is Brock Lesnar. Then he met a man he felt was the epitome of everything that the WWE audience would support. He saw a man he knew could eclipse even Bruno Sammartino’s reign as WWE Champion. He saw a man who would headline Wrestlemanias and carry WWE into the future. Not just the short term future, but the long term champion.

That man should still be your reigning and defending WWE Champion. That man is CM Punk. Paul says that you don’t have to be Nostradamus to see into the future. Paul says that he can see into the future and something really bad is going to happen here. That Sword of Damocles is hanging over our heads. It will not just come down on him, but it will come down onto everyone. Punk needs to be focused and he needs to understand that he will once again become the WWE Champion. Paul says that he has become a distraction. The sins of the mentor will fall upon his protégé and he will not let that happen.

Paul says that is why he is tendering his resignation. Paul says that it is funny that as someone would come out here and pour his heart out to you, there wouldn’t be a dry eye in the building. He sees a lot of cold hearted people. Paul says that he cares as little about their lives as they do for him. Paul says that he won’t miss the WWE Universe on Monday nights.

Paul says this is what they have driven him to. CM Punk needs to be focused on becoming the WWE Champion and he will not stand in Punk’s way. Punk is his best friend and he loves him too much not to stand in his way.

Paul says that he cannot stand out here tonight with CM Punk and let him know that he will celebrate Punk’s 455th day as champion when he defeats the Rock.

Paul says that he is sorry and he says good-bye.

CM Punk’s music plays and he comes out to the ring. He wants to know what is going on.

Punk tries to talk some sense into Paul and then he gets a mic so we can hear him. He wants to know what Paul is doing.

Paul says that he is in Punk’s way. Vince McMahon thinks that he arranged for the Shield to be paid off. That did not happen and Punk knows it did not happen. Vince thinks that he paid off Brad Maddox but Punk knows it did not happen. Paul says that Vince thinks that he had something to do with Brock Lesnar.

Punk says that Paul is too important to him and the company. The people admire Paul, just like him. They look up to him, just like they do. There are a lot of Paul Heyman guys out there.

Paul says that he told him. In the Land of the McMahons, perception is reality. If Punk thought Vince was screwing him at the Royal Rumble, wait to see what is next. He does not want Punk to think of him as a martyr, but as his friend.

Punk tells Paul on Sunday that this ‘bad dream’ that they are living in, goes back to normal. Punk tells Paul that this goes back to normal on Sunday on Day 455 of his historic title reign. He will beat the Rock and Paul Heyman will be in the corner of the WWE Champ.

Paul says that Punk is right and he will beat the Rock. Paul will be there and he will witness greatness. Punk is not only a gift from the heavens, but he will become the WWE Champion. Paul hugs Punk.

Paul raises Punk’s arm.

Mark Henry is walking in the back as we go to commercial.

 

Match Number One: Great Khali (with Hornswoggle and Natalya) versus Mark Henry

 

Khali with punches and he pushes Henry into the corner and he chops Henry. Khali with kicks and a head butt. Khali with another chop and head butt. Henry sends Khali into the corner and Henry with punches. Khali with an elbow and boot to Henry. Mark misses a charge into the corner and he chops Henry in the chest.

Khali has a chop blocked and Henry with forearms to Khali. Henry with a splash to the back and then he hits a clothesline and Khali goes down like a redwood. Mark picks up Khali and walks around the ring before hitting the World’s Strongest Slam for the three count.

 

Winner: Mark Henry

 

Mark looks at Hornswoggle and Natalya checking on Khali and Hornswoggle does not realize that he has the 7:30 ticket for the Hall of Pain and Henry with the World’s Strongest Slam to Hornswoggle.

We are back and Booker T and Teddy Long are talking about Mark Henry and how he made it into the Elimination Chamber. Chris Jericho stops by and he says that they are looking for World Champions and he is a six time World Champion and he has been in the most Elimination Chambers in history.

It is only right for business and prestige to put him into the match.

Teddy likes the idea and says that he is in. Booker says that everyone has to impress him and the WWE Universe to get into the match.

Teddy has an idea and Booker says the idea sucks. If Chris wants an opportunity. If he can beat someone already in the Elimination Chamber, he is in. He has to beat Daniel Bryan.

Chris likes the idea. He will beat Daniel Bearden and he will move one step closer to being the seven time World Champion. Chris wants to know if Booker can dig that.

Vickie Guerrero is on the phone talking about the pay per view and there is a knock on the door.

Paul Heyman enters and Vickie says that she doesn’t have time for his BS. Paul demands a stipulation for the WWE Title Match. Vickie refuses to do it. Paul says that in Vince’s absence, it is Vickie’s show.

Vickie takes a call and it is from Vince. Paul wants to talk to Vince and Vickie puts him on speaker.

Paul says that he is sorry about what happened to Vince and that Brock was way out of line. He knows that will be back on Raw in no time.

Vince tells him to shut up and he wants to know what the stipulation is.

Paul says that the WWE Title match is a huge match. Paul says that Rock will do whatever it takes to keep the title. Paul says that he wants a stipulation that if Rock is counted out or disqualified, the title goes to Punk.

Vince asks Paul if he feels strongly about that. Paul says that he will do anything if he gets the stipulation. Vince agrees to the stipulation and Paul thanks Vince and then Vince hangs up on Paul.

 

Match Number Two: Daniel Bryan versus Chris Jericho in an Impress Booker T to get into the Elimination Chamber Match Match

 

They lock up and Jericho with a rollup for a near fall. Jericho with another near fall with a rollup. Jericho with arm drags into an arm bar.

We see the ‘brain trust’ watching in the back while Bryan has Jericho in a hammer lock. Jericho with elbows. Bryan with a running knee to the midsection. Bryan with kicks of No to the chest. Bryan with a snap mare and knee to the chest for a near fall. Bryan works on the shoulder and applies a wrist lock. Jericho with a reversal and chop.

Jericho with a kick to the midsection followed by a forearm to the head and back. Jericho with a kick to the chest but Jericho is sent over the top rope to the floor. Bryan goes to the floor and he sends Jericho back in. Jericho with a shoulder to Bryan on the apron and then Jericho goes for the springboard drop kick but Bryan knows what is coming so he moves and Jericho goes to the floor. Bryan with a suicide dive and both men are down.

We go to commercial.

We are back and Bryan with a rollup for a near fall. Jericho with a clothesline and then he chokes Bryan in the corner. Bryan with an elbow to Jericho and a running drop kick into the corner. Bryan flips over Jericho but Jericho with shoulder tackles. Bryan sends Jericho over the top rope but Jericho lands on the apron. Jericho goes up top but Bryan moves. Bryan with a flying clothesline and both men are down.

Jericho blocks the drop kick into the corner but Jericho tries for the Walls of Jericho but Bryan escapes. Jericho goes for a Lionsault but Bryan gets his knees up. Jericho crotches Bryan on the top turnbuckle. Jericho tries for a superplex but Bryan blocks it. Bryan pushes Jericho to the mat. Bryan sets for the diving head butt and he connects but Jericho is able to kick out.

Bryan with knees to the head but Jericho grabs the legs and tries for the Walls of Jericho. Bryan is unable to keep Jericho from turning over. Bryan counters into the No Lock but Jericho counters again and Jericho cannot get the hold applied.

Bryan with a round kick to the head and Bryan can only get a two count. Bryan with Kicks of No to the chest but Jericho ducks the round kick and Jericho with a rollup for a near fall. Jericho with a Codebreaker for the three count.

 

Winner: Chris Jericho

 

We go to commercial.

 

We are back with the WWE Rewind: The Shield destroying Brad Maddox before being destroyed by Ryback, Sheamus, and John Cena.

 

Match Number Three: Sheamus, Ryback, and John Cena versus Heath Slater, Jinder Mahal, and Drew McIntyre

 

Slater and Ryback start things off and Slater dances and plays some air guitar before pushing Ryback. Ryback with a kick and then he presses Slater over his head and drops him behind him. Sheamus and Drew tag in and Drew with a pelvic thrust and Sheamus with a kick and punches.

Sheamus with an Irish whip but Drew with a kick and forearms. Drew with punches. Drew with a kick but Sheamus sends Drew to the apron. Drew with a punch but Sheamus with a knee to the chest and it is time for some forearms to the chest. Sheamus with a hip toss to bring Drew back in.

Cena and Jinder tag in. Cena with a punch and a Blue Thunder Bomb. Cena hits the Five Knuckle Shuffle and then all six men get in the ring. Cena with an Attitude Adjustment to Mahal while Ryback hits the muscle buster on Slater and Sheamus hits White Noise on McIntyre for a three part harmony three count.

 

Winners: Ryback, John Cena, and Sheamus

 

Ryback says that he has been waiting for Sunday for a long time because he will get to feast on the Shield. Sheamus says that for the past couple of months, we have heard ‘Believe in the Shield’. Sheamus says that he believes that there is no way that they shouldn’t get some of their own justice tonight. John Cena says that Sheamus is right. The Shield will be here. Why would they come into the middle of the ring and leave them vulnerable. Cena says that it is a bold choice, but it is also a bad one. The Shield meets the Sword. Justice meets The Law.

It is time to take a look back at what happened on Smackdown to Big Show’s bus.

Jerry Lawler tells us about Alex Riley and Yoshi Tatsu and we see what happened earlier today. Alex calls Show the biggest and fattest traffic cone. Big Show comes by and he knocks out Riley and Yoshi.

We go to commercial.

We are back and Big Show makes his way to the ring. Matt Striker is in the ring to interview Show. Matt asks his first question but before he can finish, Show knocks out Striker.

Show picks up the mic and he wants to say something but he cannot summon the proper words to express his feelings.

Show drops the mic and he leaves the ring. Matt Striker has not moved the entire time.

Michael and Jerry wonder whether Alberto Del Rio’s actions are best for his future as World Champion.

In case you missed it last Monday or Friday, we have the Bruno Sammartino Hall of Fame video package.

We go to commercial.

 

Match Number Four: Jack Swagger (with Zebekiah versus Zack Ryder

 

Swagger with a slam to Ryder and then he puts Ryder on the turnbuckles and pie faces him. Ryder kicks Swagger away and hits a missile drop kick. Ryder with a running forearm in the corner and Booker and Teddy watch as Ryder hits the Broski Boot and Ryder gets a near fall.

Ryder tries for a pescado but Swagger catches him and he hits a belly-to-belly suplex on the floor. Swagger with a near fall and then he connects with an Irish whip followed by a dive into the knee. Swagger with a running knee into the corner. Swagger runs into knees from Ryder but Ryder goes for the Rough Ryder but Swagger blocks it and he hits a Buckle Bomb and follows with the Doctor Bomb and he applies the ankle lock and Ryder taps out.

 

Winner: Jack Swagger

 

After the match, Jack Swagger says that he wants to introduce a friend of his. He is a native and great American. Zeb Coulter.

Zeb tells everyone that he has a question for everyone. What is wrong with America. He knows what is wrong and Jack Swagger doesn’t know what is wrong. Most forget what is wrong with America. He is a real patriot who had bullets buzzing around his head. He sees a country he does not recognize. He wants to know where did all of these people come from and how do we get rid of them.

Real Americans know the truth. He knows the truth. This is the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave, not the Land of the Free and the Home of whoever comes across the border.

Booker tells Teddy that Jack has been unstoppable. Teddy says that Jack should be in the Elimination Chamber. Booker says that Jack is in.

Dolph Ziggler stops by with AJ and Big E Langston. Dolph cannot believe that Jericho and Swagger are in the match. AJ reminds Booker that Dolph has his title match. Ziggler reminds Booker that he got Jericho’s contract terminated and he steals the show every night. Jericho does not belong in the match and he does not deserve a title match. Dolph says that he is in the Elimination Chamber.

Big E Langston says that for two World Title Matches and a chance to stop Chris Jericho, Dolph wants in.

Booker says that there is a man looking for a shot in the match and whoever wins is in.

Booker says that Ziggler will have to face Big Show.

It is time to take a look at the situation surrounding Brock Lesnar. Let’s go to last week’s Raw.

Antonio Cesaro is at the announce table with Cole and Lawler.

Match Number Five: Cody Rhodes versus Miz

 

They lock up and Rhodes with a hammer lock and side head lock. Rhodes with a shoulder tackle. Cody misses a clothesline and he tries for a sunset flip but Miz rolls through and kicks Rhodes in the head and gets a near fall. Miz with a front face lock but Cody with a kick and drop down uppercut. Cody with the kick to the solar plexus followed by a punch and a near fall.

Cody with kicks to Miz followed by a knee to the midsection and a snap mare followed by a running knee to the head. Rhodes with an arm bar. Miz with a head butt but Cody with an elbow. Miz with punches followed by a flapjack. Miz tries for the Reality Check but Miz cannot hit the second neck breaker. Cody is sent into the apron. Cesaro goes after Miz and Miz kicks Cesaro.

Miz sends Rhodes into the announce table and back into the ring. Cesaro sends Miz into the ring post. The referee calls for the bell.

 

Winner: Miz (by disqualification)

 

After the match, Cesaro sends Miz into the ringside barrier with a series of Giant Swings.

We go to a WWE Reading Superstars video package.

 

Match Number Six: Epico and Primo (with Rosa Mendes) versus Tensai and Brodus Clay (with The Funkettes)

 

Tensai and Primo start things off and Primo with kicks and he thinks about slamming Tensai but it fails. Tensai with a head butt. Clay tags in and Primo tries for the double noggin knocker but it does not work. They hit a double head butt. Clay with a Sheeeplex despite Epico making the blind tag. Clay with an Irish whip and splash into the corner. Clay with a shoulder tackle followed by a back senton splash from Tensai for the three count.

 

Winners: Tensai and Brodus Clay

 

After the match, it is time for some dancing. Rosa gets in Tensai’s face and Rosa is sent to the floor. Naomi teases a dive to the floor and then Cameron with a baseball slide to Rosa.

We go to commercial.

We are back and it is time for The Shield to make their way to the ring.

Dean says that they are The Shield. They stand united in this ring with a sole purpose. Shielding the WWE from atrocities. Atrocities like John Cena perpetrates every day. John threatened the Shield.

Seth says that Sheamus, Ryback, and John Cena think they can accomplish something by threatening the Shield. They do things through actions.

Roman says threatening the Shield does not work. If you want them, come and get them.

Dean says that they are typical empty threats from three morally empty individuals.

Reigns says they couldn’t get the job done with the whole roster last week. The whole world cannot stop them

Seth says that John failed last week. John fails every day. This Sunday at Elimination Chamber, it will be no different. At the hands of the Shield, John Cena will fail again.

Dean says that John will fail because he is a failure. Cena is a philosophy. He fails to set an example every day. He lives in a bubble every day. He can do what he wants without consequences. That is the John Cena Problem.

Roman says that Cena has been the problem for the last decade. They are the solution.

Seth says that Cena’s standard set the stage for the Sheamuses and Rybacks of the world. He set the standard to believe in the system. On Sunday they have the opportunity to rectify a decade of injustice in one fell swoop.

Dean says they walk in together and walk out together. Ryback, Sheamus, and Cena might not walk out. He tells them to bring as much fresh air as they can because they will drown them on Sunday.

The lights go out and when the lights go back on, Sheamus, Cena and Ryback appear. All six men battle in the ring. Cena sends Reigns over the top rope to the floor. Sheamus clotheslines Reigns over the top rope. Ryback clotheslines Ambrose and the Shield leave the ring. Ryback, Sheamus, and Cena attack The Shield and the battle goes into the crowd.

In case you missed the start of the show, we go to highlights from Paul Heyman’s comments.

Alberto Del Rio and Ricardo Rodriguez walk in the back. Ricardo has his bucket and Alberto has his scarf.

We go to commercial.

We are back and Damien Sandow demands that the music be silenced. The WWE finds itself in the Mecca of country music, Nashville and that is not a good thing. This city prides itself in glorifying itself with songs about dead dogs, broken down pick up trucks, and ignoramuses getting their hearts broken. They listen to this music instead of Mozart and Beethoven. He is doing this not to agitate them, but to save them from the doldrums of their self imposed inadequacies.

You’re Welcome.

 

Match Number Seven: Alberto Del Rio (with Ricardo Rodriguez) versus Damien Sandow in a Non Title Match

 

Sandow with a kick and knees to Del Rio. Sandow with a side Russian leg sweep followed by the Elbow of Disdain. Sandow misses a charge into the corner and Del Rio with two clotheslines and then he avoids a clothesline from Sandow and hits a tilt-a-whirl back breaker. Del Rio with a super kick for a near fall.

Del Rio floats over into the cross arm breaker and Sandow taps out.

 

Winner: Alberto Del Rio

 

After the match, Alberto says that Big Show gave us the best promo of his life earlier tonight. For the first time in his life, he agrees with Big Show. The time for talking is over. The time for parking lots, hotel rooms, and tour buses is over. After Sunday, Show can go anywhere in his tour bus because Alberto says that there is only one place he is going.

Alberto points to the Wrestlemania sign and then he says that he is going to Wrestlemania.

Wade Barrett walks in the back for his match with Kofi Kingston but Bo Dallas attacks him. Officials separate Dallas and Barrett. We go to commercial.

 

Match Number Eight: Kofi Kingston versus Wade Barrett in a Non Title Match

 

Kofi with kicks and forearms as he focuses on Barrett’s jaw. Barrett with a kick and back elbow. Barrett with kicks to Kofi and the referee warns Barrett. Barrett with knees to Kofi’s head followed by a short arm clothesline and he gets a near fall. Barrett with a rear chin lock. Kofi with a jawbreaker to Barrett followed by chops and a drop kick. Kofi misses the leaping clothesline. Barrett avoids the SOS. Kofi with a kick and Shadows over Hell for a near fall.

Kofi with a kick to Barrett. Barrett with an Irish whip but Kofi with a pendulum kick and a cross body for a near fall. Kofi misses a springboard move and Barrett hits the Blackpool Slam for a near fall.

Barrett sets up for the Bull Hammer but Kofi moves. Kofi misses Trouble in Paradise and he puts Kofi in the ring skirt and hits the Bull Hammer for the three count.

 

Winner: Wade Barrett

 

After the match, Barrett wants Bo Dallas to come out.

We go to commercial.

 

Match Number Nine: Kane versus Dolph Ziggler (with AJ Lee and Big E Langston) in a Winner gets into the Elimination Chamber Match Match

 

Ziggler punches Kane and kicks him. Kane with an elbow and he sends Ziggler into the corner and punches Ziggler. Kane gets a near fall. We see Booker and Teddy standing in the back. Kane with a slam for a near fall.

Kane with a snap mare but Ziggler gets up and hits the drop kick before Kane can do it. Ziggler with kicks to Kane followed by punches. Kane with an uppercut or two. Kane with kicks to Ziggler followed by another uppercut. Ziggler with a hurdle leap frog but Kane sends Ziggler into the air. Ziggler goes to the floor when Kane sets for the choke slam and we go to commercial.

We are back and Ziggler with a reverse chin lock but Kane with a snap mare followed by a punch. Kane with an Irish whip into the corner followed by a clothesline. Kane charges into a boot and Ziggler goes to the turnbuckles but Kane with an uppercut and Ziggler goes to the floor.

Kane and Langston stare each other down. Ziggler sends Kane into the ringside barrier thanks to Langston’s distraction. Ziggler returns to the ring and the referee continues his count. Ziggler with a neck breaker to bring Kane back into the ring. Ziggler with rapid fire elbow drops followed by a delay into a leaping elbow drop and a near fall.

Ziggler with a reverse chin lock. Kane with punches and then he catches Ziggler on a cross body attempt. Ziggler with a DDT and both men are down. Ziggler gets a near fall. Ziggler misses a splash into the corner and Kane with a boot to the head and he gets a near fall. Kane with an Irish whip and clothesline into the corner. Kane with a second Irish whip and clothesline. Ziggler avoids the side slam and he applies the sleeper.

Ziggler gets a near fall. Ziggler goes for the Zig Zag but Kane holds on to the ropes. Kane with a side slam and Kane goes up top. AJ distracts Kane and Ziggler bounces off the ropes and he knocks AJ off the apron but she is caught by Langston. Kane with a choke slam for the three count.

 

Winner: Kane

 

We go to commercial and Rock is next because there probably aren’t any more commercial breaks to hype his appearance.

We are back and it is almost time for the Rock. First we have an Elimination Chamber video.

FINALLY . . . it is time to smell the Rock as he makes his way to the ring.

He says that this is a very special night. Not only are they sold out, he has waited a long time to say . . . FINALLY . . . the Rock has come back to Nash . . . Ville.

Rock says that Nashville is a special city to the Rock. He asks if they want to know why. Rock says that it is ‘Story Time with the Rock’. This is a true story and some might even know. In 1987, a fifteen year old Rock and his family moved to Nashville. He signed up for high school, McGavick High School.

He was no ordinary 15 year old. He kicked puberty’s candy ass. He got no play even at 6’4” 240 pounds because the girls thought he was an undercover cop. He ended up hanging out in a bar listening to country music on Broadway. He hung out with his buddy Downtown Bruno when somebody magical walked in, not Jeff Jarrett or Willie Nelson. In walked a crackhead. He asks if anyone wanted to buy a car. He pointed to a blue 1979 Thunderbird. Everyone ignored him, except for one person . . . a 15 year old Rock.

He thought bar . . . car . . . crackhead, what could go wrong. Rock offered $40 and he would pay him the rest later when offered $75. Rock started driving down the road and he heard something in the back. Rock says that he did not realize there was another crackhead sitting in the back seat. Rock told the crackhead to get out of the car.

Rock kept driving and he had another thought in his head. Maybe the car is stolen. He says that he did the most mature thing he could do at 15 years old. He ditched the car in a Burger King parking lot at 2:00 am and went back into the lounge.

There are two takeaways from this story. If you are going to buy a car, don’t ever buy a car from a crackhead. The other story is not to be like the Rock when he was 15 years old. Be like the Rock at 25 when he had his life under control. He had his first match at the Nashville Fairgrounds with the dream of being the WWE Champion.

CM Punk’s music plays and he makes his way onto the stage with Paul Heyman.

Rock mentions the last time we saw Punk and Paul in the ring. You had the homeless vampire hugging on the hairy werewolf.

Does Paul want to stack the deck at Elimination Chamber? He tells Paul to bring it. He tells Punk if he wants to smile on the stage. He will beat Punk’s punk ass on Sunday and if he walks down the ramp right now, he will beat Punk’s punk ass all over Nashville.

Punk thinks about it and he makes his way to the ring while Rock takes off his shirt. Rock does the Rock Bounce and then Punk and Paul stop before getting to the ring. Punk goes into the ring after teasing that he was going to the back. Punk with a few shots but Rock with a series of punches and then Punk with knees to Rock. Rock with a spinebuster and it is time for the People’s Elbow but Paul trips Rock and Punk gets Rock on his shoulders and hits the Go To Sleep.

Punk picks up his title belt and he leaves the ring with it.

Rock struggles to get up and Punk tells Rock that story time is over. He wants Rock to understand one thing. Everything Rock wants to bring it, he is just going to take it.

2014 - A number of readers sent along a link to an article in The Daily Mall in the UK about a 12 year old student who had been suspended for being a TNA fan.

Seriously!

Aidan Fradley was put into "isolation" after he had the TNA logo shaved into the side of his head as he was going to the TNA tour in London. So, he walked into school and was removed from classes and forced to sit in a separate room.

His mother, rightfully furious, immediately came to school to retrieve him once she found out, telling The Mall how she doesn't see how the initials could affect anything he was doing in school.

Obviously, the issue wasn't that he was a TNA fan but the initials "TNA" were shaved in his head and there's obviously another meaning for those initials.

2014 - WWE released "Shawn Michaels - Mr. Wrestlemania" on DVD and Blu-Ray.

2015 -  Davey Boy Smith Jr. and Lance Archer (KES) won the Pro Wrestling NOAH GHC tag team championship from Shane Haste and Mikey Nicholls (TMDK).

2015 - AJ Styles captured the IWGP Heavyweight champiobship at the New Japan Pro Wrestling "New Beginning" event in Osaka, Japan.   Matthew Macklin filed the following report:

NJPW The New Beginning in Osaka, February 11th

Togi Makabe had to pull out of the show due to coming down with influenza, so Satoshi Kojima replaced him in the six man tag.

Sho Tanaka defeated Yohei Komatsu.  Tanaka got the win after a Boston Crab. As you'd expect this was a fun short opener. Both guys showed a lot more aggression than usual.

Mascara Dorada & Tiger Mask IV defeated Captain New Japan & Manabu Nakanishi.  This is one of the matches that got changed due to Makabe falling ill. The match was designed to showcase Dorada, but neither Nakanishi & Captain were the right guy for him to be in there with. It was fine for what it was, but Dorada was never gonna get out of second gear and fly around the ring with two guys as slow and clumsy as Captain & Nakanishi. Dorada got the pin when he rolled up Captain.

Chase Owens & Rob Conway defeated Jushin Thunder Liger & Hiroyoshi Tenzan.  Bruce Tharpe was great here in being a completely over the top heel villain while wearing the most ridiculous gold jacket and gold glasses. Tharpe distracted Liger allowing Conway to hit his Ego Trip on both Liger and Tenzan. This allowed Owens to pin Liger after a Package Piledriver. Owens who doesn't strike me as being good enough for a spot in NJPW, goes on to challenge Liger for the NWA Jr title on Saturday.

Kota Ibushi defeated Tomoaki Honma.  This match was fantastic. The record for the most Kokeshi attempts in one match might have been set as it took Honma four attempts to finally hit it for the first time. He also hit the running Kokeshi to the chest and also to the back which I hadn't seen before. Honma controlled a lot of the match until Ibushi got back into it. Ibushi as always was incredible and some of the lariat exchanges here were as stiff as anything. Ibushi for the win after hitting the Phoenix Splash. After the match they went face to face and exchanged slaps to the face which I presume is as good as a handshake in NJPW.

IWGP Junior Heavyweight TagTeam Championship:  The Young Bucks defeated Time Splitters and ReDRagon.  If I were to list all the crazy spots in this one I'd be here until the next show on Saturday started. One of which was O'Reilly catching a moonsaulting KUSHIDA into a triangle choke. The Bucks got the win after hitting More Bang for your Buck on KUSHIDA. The Young Bucks now start their second reign with the gold after another great crazy match from these teams.  

IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship: Kenny Omega defeated Ryusuke Taguchi.  This was a better match than their WK encounter as it had more time.  Omega is a superstar. Everything from his entrance, to his look, to the way he carries himself and I can see him having a big future as a heavyweight. Taguchi has gone all out with his ass based offense as of late. Of course it got ridiculous when Omega decided to attack Taguchi's number one weapon with the end of a Bullet Club flag. Taguchi returned the favour.  Omega's deadlift gutwrench sit out powerbomb is a thing of beauty. Omega got the win with the One Winged Angel. After the match The Bucks helped Omega piledrive Taguchi on a chair. Mascara Dorada hit the ring and made a challenge to Omega.

Kazuchika Okada, Toru Yano & Kazushi Sakuraba defeated Tama Tonga, Bad Luck Fale  & Yujiro Takahashi.  Okada has made the first step in getting out of his slump. This was a really well booked match. Okada spent the majority of the match being worked over and it looked like he might be beaten on several occasions, and believably so given the slump he has been in. Okada managed to escape the triple team of Bullet Club and hit a Rainmaker on Tonga for the pin. After the match Okada stood with his foot on Tonga's chest looking at Fale, just as Fale has done to him when he pinned him. Okada now has his sights on getting his win back on Fale on Saturday.

Tetsuya Naito, Yuji Nagata & Satoshi Kojima defeated YOSHI-HASHI, Shinsuke Nakamura & Tomohiro Ishii.  This was great and everyone had their chance to shine. The Osaka crowd hate Naito and it is fascinating to hear a usually respectful Japanese crowd react to someone so negatively. Kojima replaced the ill Makabe here and went to war with Ishii. Nagata is out to prove that he is as good as he ever was and the exchanges between Nakamura and Nagata only confirm that their match on Saturday could be a classic. Naito got the pin on YOSHI-HASHI after a Stardust Press.

IWGP Tag Team Championship: Doc Gallows & Karl Anderson defeated Katsuyori Shibata & Hirooki Goto.  This was a huge shocker, as Gallows and Anderson take back the titles a month after losing them in Meiyu Tag's first defence. This match was just great from start to finish and was unlike your usually WWE style formulaic tag match. Lots of great tag team wrestling, and team work. Shibata fought to the death after Goto was put down with a Gun Stun. It took a Gun Stun followed by a Magic Killer to put Shibata away. Just a great great match.

IWGP Heavyweight Championship: AJ Styles defeated Hiroshi Tanahashi.  AJ Styles is once again the IWGP Heavyweight champion and Bullet Club are running NJPW. Tanahashi got busted opened when he hit a high fly flow to the floor taking out the entire Bullet Club, which heightened the drama. There was lots of near falls and finished attempts near the end with Tanahashi teasing a Styles Clash from the Middle rope. Styles got the win after a Bloody Sunday and a Styles Clash. As you'd expect it was a great match. Afterwards Karl Anderson gloated about Bullet Club's great night and the fact that they now hold four major NJPW championships.

The show is available on demand at NJPWWorld.com and is well worth checking out, especially if you are a Bullet Club fan.

2015 - During an interview on Vince Russo's website, former WWF star Chyna alleged that at the end of her relationship with Triple H, he hit her when she confronted him about whether he was having a relationship with Stephanie McMahon behind her back.

 

In the interview, Chyna described the incident as, "He swiped my hand, I swiped his hand, he hit me." She described it as the end of the relationship and added that Triple H felt bad and was crying after it happened. It was shortly after this that Chyna found the love letter from Stephanie to HHH, confirming there was a relationship, which led to the end of her WWF run.

In response to the claims, Triple H, via WWE, issued the following statement:

"The false statements and reckless allegations made by Joan Laurer (aka Chyna) on a recent podcast about a physical dispute are a complete fabrication. While Joan has had significant struggles in life, this does not justify making such claims."

2015 - WWE NXT Takeover: Rivals is broadcast on the WWE Network.  Mike Johnson filed the following report:

Welcome to PWInsider.com's ongoing coverage of WWE NXT Takeover: Rival from Winter Park, FL at Full Sail Live on the WWE Network.

KICKOFF

The pre-game panel is Renee Young, Jason Albert, Corey Graves and Byron Saxton.   They welcomed everyone to the show and previewed the main events.

They went to a video feature on the NXT Chammpionship Contender's Tournament, leading into a feature on Adrian Neville vs. Finn Balor.

The panel discussed Balor vs. Neville.  Jason Albert wondered if Finn Balor was showing up or if Demon Balor was.

They showed Kevin Owens entering the building earlier today in a pretty dapper suit.

They showed a video from last week where Hideo Itami was being interviewed after losing to Finn Balor when he was attacked by Tyler Breeze who screamed that Itami ruined it, because Tyler could have beaten him.  The panel said William Regal made a decision today that they will face off tonight on the show.

They aired clips setting up Bull Dempsey vs. Baron Corbin for tonight.

The panel discussed the Four Way for the NXT Women's championship.  Ric Flair is in attendance tonight.

NXT Women's champion Charlotte joined the panel.  She said she was anxious and excited because it's the first Four Way for the Divas in NXT.  She said Bayley was her friend but everyone is gunning for the title.  She said she was outnumbered but she's beaten Natalya and Paige when no one thought she would and tonight she gets to show she's the best Diva in the game.   She said she beat all of her challenger tonight in singles matches and Sasha Banks only beat her because she was an opportunist, and has never beaten her one on one.

They showed WWE NXT champion Sami Zayn showing up earlier tonight.

Outside, Byron Saxton polled fans on who was going to win the championship match tonight.

They aired a video feature on Owens vs. Zayn.

The pre-show closed out with predictions for the main event.   Renee and Albert called Sami.  Graves and Saxton declared Owens would win the title.

WWE NXT TAKEOVER: RIVAL

The announce team is Rich Brennan, Jason Albert and Corey Graves.

Hideo Itami vs. Tyler Breeze

 Breeze had a selfie stick (all color coordinated with the same material as his ring gear) and a hot blonde plant (recent NXT Diva signee Gionna Daddio) hopped the rail to try and embrace him.  Itami was all over Breeze early, looking for revenge.  He drilled him with a series of kicks to the face as he was in the ropes but was pulled to the outside and had his leg snapped against the apron.  Breeze began working over Itami's leg and brought him over to the ringpost, smashing the knee against it.  He used the figure four on the ringpost to continue the carnage.   Breeze locked on a Texas Cloverleaf, trying to force a submission.  Itami made it to the ropes.

They went back and forth with some nice near falls.  Breeze caught Itami with a kick as he went for a clothesline for a close near-fall.   Breeze nailed a series of punches but Itami absorbed them and began kicking and striking the hell out of him.  Itami nailed the hesitation dropkick into the corner and nailed a running kick for the pin.

Your winner, Hideo Itami!

Good opening match.  They told a good story, had some nice near falls and there was a good spotlight on Itami as it came to an end.

Noel Foley is sitting in the crowd.  She hosts Ringside or Riot for our friends at www.RingsideCollectibles.com.

They showed William Regal and one of the referees talking backstage with Kevin Owens but didn't explain why.

No DQ: Bull Dempsey vs. Baron Corbin

Corbin charged the ring and they began brawling.  They went to the floor (there was a screwy clothesline over the top) and back into the ring, then up the aisle.  Bull tossed Corbin into the ring apron and snapped him with a suplex on the entrance ramp.  Dempsey stomped Corbin down on the floor and went under the ring looking for a weapon.   Corbin made a comeback and scored a two count but was cut off.  Dempsey nailed a flying headbutt but Corbin kicked out at two, which they played up as a big deal.

Corbin was tossed to the floor and then into the ring steps.  Dempsey grabbed a steel chair and brought it into the ring.  He went to nail Corbin but was caught with The End of Days and pinned.

Your winner, Baron Corbin!

Short but good brawl.

After the match, Corbin took the chair and set over Dempsey.   I didn't care for that coming from a babyface as it sort of buried Dempsey. I'm curious where they go from here with him.

They showed William Regal and the referee speaking with NXT champ Sami Zayn.

They showed Bayley and Becky Lynch preparing.

WWE NXT Tag Team champions Wesley Blake & Buddy Murphy vs. The Lucha Dragons

 

Blake and Sin Cara started off with the challenger using his Lucha spots to toss him off balance.  They screwed up one of the first spots, which the crowd recognized.  Cara drilled him in the corner.  Kalisto tagged in and went for a springboard but slipped.  He recovered and nailed a cross body to the outside.  He nailed a big kick on Murphy and used a forward roll off the ropes for a two count.  Murphy tagged in but was caught with several springboard armdrags.  Cara tagged and the challengers double-teamed Murphy.

Murphy and Blake came back with an elevated doubleteam neckbreaker for a two count.  They looked pretty cool.   Kalisto tagged in and made a comeback and went for his finisher but it was countered.  Murphy was caught with several big moves but kicked out.  They went back and forth with some nice near falls but their partners interfered.  Each man made tags.  Cara hit a bodypress but it was countered and rolled through by Black for a two count.  They kept countering each other's moves for near falls.

Sin Cara nailed a one-armed powerbomb on Murphy for a two count.  Murphy finally hit a top rope frog splash for the pin on Cara.

Your winners and still WWE NXT Tag Team champions, Buddy Murphy & Wesley Blake.

A little rough early on but it got better and was a solid match.

Someone hacked in and a message that read "THE TAKEOVER ISN'T OVER.  IT'S JUST BEGUN.  STAY TUNED...NEXT WEEK."  That's the build to Solomon Crowe's debut.

NXT Championship Contender's Tournament Final: Finn Balor vs. Adrian Neville

There was a nice feeling out process where they tested each other.  Balor went for a dive but Neville saw it coming and returned to the ring.  Balor sent him back outside with a dropkick but was again cut off when he went for a dive.  Neville nailed a missile dropkick and cinched in a chinlock.   Neville controlled Balor and worked him over in the corner with kicks.  Balor, on the apron, fought back and went for a springboard into the ring but was dropkicked down.  Neville suplexed him back into the ring for a two count.  So far, so good.

Neville worked over Balor, who made a comeback and hit a big dive to the floor.  He followed up with a running dropkick on the floor to Neville, who was sitting in a chair in the corner.  Balor nailed a top rope double stomp to the back of Neville's head for a two count.   Balor went for his reverse elevated DDT but Neville began drilling him with kicks.  Balor nailed a Pele Kick but Neville came back with a huge superkick to the head.  Both men went down.  The referee began counting them down but they returned before the ten count.

Neville went right after Balor and nailed an awesome German suplex.  He nailed a second with a bridge for a two count.  Neville nailed an awesome twisting corkscrew splash for a near fall.  That was awesome.  Neville drilled him with a hard running elbow.   Balor began fighting back and nailed the Slingblade.  Balor sent Neville upside down with a hard lariat.   Balor nailed an inverted elevated DDT for a two count.  Neville went to the top but Balor got out of the way.  Neville drilled him and went for the Red Arrow but Balor pulled up his knees and packaged him for a near two count.  Balor nailed a nasty dropkick in the corner and nailed the double stomp for the pin.

Your winner, Finn Balor!

Really great, athletic back and forth match.  They worked their asses off. One of the better matches on any of the Takeover specials with lots of intensity.

They shook hands after the match.

WWE NXT Women's champion Charlotte vs. Sasha Banks vs. Bayley vs. Becky Lynch

They all began battling. Bayley and Charlotte went back and forth into the ring.  Charlotte was sent to the floor.  Becky and Sasha attacked her and tossed her into the ring apron where the LED lights are and "broke" the board by slamming her into it.  They hit the ring and began working over Bayley but argued over which of them were going to get the pin and the title.  Becky backed down to Sasha then grabbed her for a pumphandle suplex from behind.  Becky nailed a legdrop on Bayley for a two count.

They went back and forth and into a series of spots where everyone wiped someone out with their signature moves.  Charlotte was the last one standing but was sent into the corner shoulder-first and hit the ringpost.  Sasha set up Charlotte on the second buckle and Becky on the bottom, then drilled them both with double knees to the gut.  That was pretty creative.  Bayley returned to throw her with a big suplex, leaving her facing off with the champ.

Becky began nailing a series of running elbows in the corner on Charlotte.   Bayley placed her on the top and nailed a rana off the top.  Bayley hit the Bayley to Belly suplex but Lynch broke it up at the two count.  Bayley slammed her into the apron and hit a sliding dropkick under the buckles onto Becky.  Sasha hit a dive out of the ring onto each of them, leaving the champion in the ring with time to recover.   Charlotte nailed a slingshot pescado to the floor, wiping out everyone.

Back in the ring, Lynch nailed a suplex on Charlotte for a two count.  She placed Charlotte on the top but Bayley got involved and wiped out Lynch.  Charlotte was nailed with Bayley to belly from the top.  Bayley covered her but Sasha attacked her and covered the champ.  Charlotte kicked out at the last second.  Sasha locked on a crossface.  Charlotte tried to fight it to the ropes but was pulled back.  Sasha turned it onto a crucifix style pin and the exhausted champion was defeated.  GREAT finish.

Your winner and new WWE NXT Women's champion, a most deserving Sasha Banks!

Great match.   It was a total athletic, kick-ass presentation with some great near falls.  One of the best women's bouts in WWE in the last decade. The crowd really thought Bayley was going to win several times.  The finish was just awesome.

After Charlotte recovered, she offered her hand to Banks. Banks cautiously took it and they embraced but Banks shoved her away and went "WOO!" in her face before leaving with the belt above her head.

WWE NXT champion Sami Zayn vs. Kevin Owens

Quite the moment for each of these guys, especially if you followed them pre-WWE.  The look of intensity on each of their faces as they came out was as real as it gets.  I won't even kid you - I had chills for the entrances.  Until they face off on the main roster, this is the biggest match of their lives.

They stared at each other after the bell rang, taking it in.  Owens went right to the floor to psych out Zayn and control the pace by manipulating the champion.   Owens did some Larry Zbsyzko-esque stalling early that certainly popped Jess McGrath.  Zayn finally had enough and hit a running flip dive over the referee as the ref admonished Owens, who was still on the floor.  That was great. Zayn worked over Owens on the floor, then tossed him in the ring and railed away on him with punches in the corner.   Owens slipped out from underneath and nailed Snake Eyes, then nailed a killer clothesline in the corner.

Owens nailed a second clothesline on the champion.  Owens controlled the champion and cinched in a rear chinlock.  Zayn fought his way out but was cut off and elevated and dropped across the top rope, bouncing back hard into the ring for a two count.  Owens locked on the rear chinlock again.  The battle went to the floor where Owens continued the assault.  Zayn fired back but was cut off and clotheslined down every time he mounted some attempt at offense. 

Back in the ring, Steen stomped and beat Zayn.  He nailed a gutbuster and a back senton splash for a two count.   Owens stood over Zayn as he fought to pull himself up, then slapped him down.  Zayn finally came back with a big clothesline as Owens rebounded off the ropes.  He fired back with offense and clotheslined Owens over the top to the floor.  Zayn worked over Steen with a series of rights on the floor.  He was cut off and tossed back in the ring but before Owens could capitalize, Zayn nailed a clothesline off the apron. 

Back in the ring, Owens nailed a back elbow but Zayn ducked another and hit the Blue Thunder Bomb for a two count.  Zayn was cut off with a big kick to the chin as he charged and collapsed in the corner.  Owens hit a running cannonball in the corner for a close two count.  Zayn made a comeback and hit an awesome suplex for a two count.   Owens went to the apron.  Zayn went to grab him but was hit with a jawbreaker on the ropes.  Owens went to the top but Zayn met him and teased a superplex.   Owens tried to fight out and finally did with a big headbutt.  He went for the swanton but Zayn pulled his knees up.

Owens retreated to the floor.  Zayn went after him.  Owens tried to powerbomb him on the apron but Zayn escaped and hit a springboard moonsault to Owens in the aisle.  Zayn hit the back of his head on the entrance ramp after he connected from the momentum.  He recovered but was woozy, and tossed Owens back into the ring.  Zayn went for the Helluva Kick but was too dizzy.  Owens charged and nailed the pop up powerbomb but Zayn was able to get his shoulder up at the last second.

Owens began mauling Zayn with right hands and knocked him down to the mat.  He cntinued beating the hell out of Zayn while Zayn was out of it.  The referee pulled Owens off as Zayn was caught up in the ropes.  Owens went right back to the attack.   A WWE trainer came to the ring to check on Zayn who insisted he was fine.  Owens nailed a powerbomb and followed up with a second one.  He covered Zayn, who pulled his shoulder up at the last second.  WWE's Dr. Chris Amann came to ringside and they checked on Zayn.  Owens pulled him away and nailed two more powerbombs.  He went for a fifth but the doctor called the match and the referee tackling Owens to stop him.

The referee raised Owens' hand and handed him the championship.  New champion by referee's stoppage, which is probably a first in WWE history.  The crowd didn't like that it was stopped but some of them were excited Owens was champion.

Your winner and new WWE NXT champion Kevin Owens.

Owens kissed the belt as he kneeled down on the mat and then saluted the crowd while standing on the apron.  The medical attendants checked on Zayn.

An excellent main event with a great story and unique finish.

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